The wind threatened to knock down our display in the university quad and I braced a sign with my elbow before offering the approaching student a pamphlet. She waved it away.
"Can I ask you a question?"
"Sure," I answered the frowning young woman.
"Why are you here spreading false information while there are so many children in foster care? And even if they are adopted, they'll have a terrible life. And these pictures on your sign aren't even real."
"Oh, I'm sorry. Of course we don't want to say anything untrue. Can you tell me what about this picture isn't real?" I straightened the sign against the pull of the wind.
"That's not what a baby looks like at ten weeks."
"What does a baby look like at ten weeks?"
"Like a bean." She held her fingers up for me to see just how tiny and insignificant a ten-week-old fetus is. She gestured at the sign, "They don't even develop that much until four months."
I opened my mouth to respond, but she gestured impatiently. "You know what, I don't have time to talk to you." She stormed off.
I offered literature to another half dozen passing students. "Hi, did you get one? Would you like one? Have a nice day."
Another student stopped, a guy this time. "Hey, I'm just curious, why are you guys out here?"
"We're here to talk about abortion - what do you think about it?"
"Well, it's a tough issue. I feel for both sides. I don't think it's a good thing, but I won't tell someone else what to do. I wouldn't want them to tell me what to do."
"But we tell people what to do all the time. We have laws against driving drunk, and rape, and drowning five-year-olds in the bathtub."
"But that's different. That's effecting another living person."
"So when a woman is pregnant, what is she pregnant with?"
"Of what species?"
"Human, of course."
"So when a woman is pregnant, she's pregnant with a human being."
"No, she's pregnant with a fetus."
"Ok, is the fetus alive?"
“If it were dead, then every pregnancy would result in miscarriage, wouldn’t it?”
“I guess so.”
“So a pregnant woman is pregnant with a living member of the human species, right?”
“Do you believe that some innocent people are more valuable or more deserving of protection than others?”
“Then what makes it okay to kill unborn people?”
“Nothing, I guess. I’ve got to go to class, but you’ve given me a lot to think about.”
“Thanks for stopping. Have a good day!”
An eighth-grade class on a field trip passed our display. The teachers couldn’t keep the students from staring at the images of abortion victims on our display, but they hurried them away as quickly as they could.
As soon as they were given free time to see the campus, the students came back. A group of girls surrounded one of our signs, studying the diagram of how abortions are performed. I explained the diagram to them and watched their faces change from puzzled to horrified.
One girl told us that the doctor had told her mother to abort her little sister because something might be wrong with her. The group froze.
“But she didn’t do the abortion and my little sister’s perfectly fine. I love her so much!” She broke into a smile and the group relaxed.
“So if you knew a girl who was pregnant, what would you tell her?” I asked.
“No abortion!” Several girls answered at once before the group drifted away.
I continued offering pamphlets to passing students and jumped when a girl came up behind me and loudly asked, “Are you standing for abortion or against it?”
“I’m against abortion,” I answered, steeling myself for her angry response.
Instead, she grabbed my hand and shook it firmly, “Thank you for being here.” She turned and walked away.
I offered students to a few more passing students. Some refused - some very rudely - and some accepted a pamphlet. Another guy stopped in front of the sign.
“I have to ask: what do you think about a twelve-year-old girl who’s raped by her uncle? Do you think she should have to carry that child for nine months and be reminded of the horrible thing that her uncle did to her?”
“Well, first I have to say that that’s one of the most horrific acts I can imagine. In fact, I can’t even begin to imagine how awful I would feel if it happened to me. I would need help. We would need to make sure that girl gets the help she needs to start healing, but abortion will not help her.”
“Will an abortion unrape her?”
“Will it heal any of the physical or emotional trauma resulting from the rape?”
“No, but the baby…”
“Exactly. There are now two people we have to be concerned with: the girl AND her baby. An abortion will not help the girl heal. An abortion would just give the rapist a second victim. Not only will the girl carry the trauma of the rape for the rest of her life, but an innocent child will lose his or her life.”
“Wow, I never thought about it that way. A second victim. Wow, thank you. I think you changed my mind.”
All these conversations took place within a span of about thirty minutes. This is how the Survivors Campus Outreach team is changing the culture and abolishing abortion - one mind at a time. Join us! Participate in an event, join the Campus Outreach team, or support our work. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to learn more.